Letter, 1/14: Little lies paved way for big ones

Letter, 1/14: Little lies paved way for big ones

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First lady Melania Trump listens as President Donald Trump speaks to reporters before his New Year's Eve party Tuesday at his Mar-a-Lago property in Palm Beach, Fla.

A little less than three years ago, I wrote an opinion piece that wound up in the Lincoln Journal Star. My thesis went something like this: Seemingly innocuous lies (the claim that Trump's inauguration crowd was the largest ever) were a means of testing the waters, of paving the way for more flagrant lies that would put lives at risk, lies that would gnaw at the spindly balsa wood chair legs propping up our increasingly fragile democracy.

Those lies would one day result in a moment of crisis when Americans would turn to leadership for answers to vital questions concerning national security, and those answers would no longer carry any value.

Forty-six hours into the new decade, we assassinated Iran's second-most-powerful figure. The following day, we were told that the assassination was justified because multiple coordinated attacks were imminent. This might or might not be true. We have no way of knowing.

Even if we are being told the truth, we have no reason to believe so -- for the same reason that, almost three years ago, we refused to believe that 3.7 billion people attended the inauguration.

The prediction that I made more than 1,000 long days ago was not the result of any sort of communion with The Divine: It was easy, at the time, to see where this all led. What is most frightening about where we stand now is that absolutely no one knows what happens next or whom to rely upon when whatever happens inevitably happens.

Keith Petit, Omaha


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